Toro Timemaster 30 Inch Lawn Mower Review: Is It Worth It?

Want to trim the time it takes to mow your grass? The Toro Timemaster 30 Lawn Mower will do the trick. It's full of sleek, innovative and time-saving features.

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I’ve always enjoyed cutting my lawn. What I didn’t enjoy was the hour-and-a-half to two-hour time commitment to mow my 1/3-acre lot.

For years now, I’ve been researching wider, homeowner-grade, walk-behind mowers. I finally decided to buy the one that got the wide, walk-behind trend started — The Toro Timemaster 30.

What is the Toro Timemaster 30?

The Toro Timemaster 30 is a 30-inch-wide walk-behind mower powered by easy-to-start, 223cc Briggs & Stratton gasoline engine. The 30-inch cutting deck features two 15-inch blades that finely mince your grass clippings for beautifully lush lawn.

The mower offers easy two-point lawn height adjustment, a quick stow storage lever, and an automatic blade stop system in case you need to move a toy or debris from your path.

The innovative Personal Pace self-propelled system is a game changer.  It senses your preferred walking pace and adjusts the mower’s speed accordingly. And when it’s time to tidy up, a built-in washout port cleans the underside of your mowing deck, hassle-free.

The mower comes assembled in a gigantic 140-lb. box. Also included are the grass clippings collection bag, attachable side discharge shoot, garden hose attachment for the washout port, and a quart of engine oil.

How We Tested It

Over two-plus weeks with the Timemaster 30, I mowed my lawn three times, and my neighbor Mary’s standard city lot once for good measure. I bagged my clipping the first go-round, used the side discharge shoot the next, and mulched mine and Mary’s yards last.

Performance Review

Fh22d Toro Timesaver 06 02 004 Family Handyman Approved Toro Timemaster 30 Lawn MowerFamily Handyman

Is It Really a Time Master?

I figured the Toro Timemaster 30 would expedite my weekly mowing, but I was surprised at the amount of time I saved.  With my old trusty 21-inch mower. it took me roughly 90 minutes to mulch my grass.  The first time I cut my lawn with the Timemaster 30 it took only 49 minutes… and I bagged the clippings!  How could this be??

There are two factors at play here.  The first is the easiest to identify — the 30-inch cutting deck. It’s nine inches wider than my previous mower, meaning 30 percent fewer paths as I crisscrossed my way across my lawn.

The second is the fantastic Personal Pace self-propulsion system.  On my last lawn mower, flooring the throttle to rabbit speed set the pace. I pulled out a stopwatch and walked the length of my yard to discover the old mower did the 120-foot-long lot in about 28.2-seconds per pass, or 2.9 mph.

With the Personal Pace system, the mower moves at YOUR speed, no matter how fast or slow you want to go, up to a near-jogging 4.5 mph. When I walked my lot at my cadence with the Toro Timemaster 30, it took 23.9 seconds, or 3.4 mph — 1/2-mph faster than before!

Other Great Features

The blade-stop system on the Timemaster 30 is incredibly helpful. Rather than turn off the entire mower, the safety lever only disengages the blades. That way if you approach a hose, tennis ball or fallen debris, you can safely walk away from your running mower to pick it up or move it out of your way. No need to shut down the engine and restart it.

When I wrapped up my yard work for the day, I appreciated the quick stow storage lever, which folds the handle up to save floor space in my tightly-packed two-car garage.  And the built-in wash-out port easily attaches a hose to the mower deck, so I can keep the underside of the Timemaster clean without rolling the behemoth on its side to spray it off.

Value

The Toro Timemaster 30’s value is all tied to its 30-inch cutting deck. A similar Toro mower with a standard 22-inch deck and all the same features costs less than half what the Timemaster 30 does.  Ultimately, it comes down to how much lawn you need to mow, and how quickly you need to mow it to justify the lofty $1,500 price tag.

Reliability and durability

The Toro Timemaster 30 feels sturdy and well-built with a solid steel deck and cast aluminum frame. The beefy, workhorse Briggs and Stratton engine can power through almost anything. An industry leader in lawn care, Toro backs all its mowers with a three-year, guaranteed-to-start warranty.

Ease of use

Though the Timemaster 30 is available with a push-button start, the unit I bought had a pull cord start.  I was a little skeptical about getting another mower with a pull-start, but the salesperson assured me it would be the easiest pull start I’d ever used.

They were right. After one pull, the mower fired up. And thanks to the blade stop system, I didn’t have to turn it off for the rest of your mow. The Timemaster 30 is foolproof, with no buttons or dials to push or adjust. Just fire it up and start walking.

Why You Should Buy This

The Toro Timemaster 30 really is an outstanding lawn mower. It’s well-made and full of helpful and innovative features like the wide cutting deck, Personal Pace self-propulsion and built-in washout port. Sure, it’s a splurge. But if you have a large lawn or would rather waste away your weekends in your backyard hammock, this mower may be for you.

Where to Buy

Toro Timemaster 30 In. Briggs And Stratton Personal Pace Self Propelled Walk Behind Gas Lawn Mower With Spin Stopvia merchant

The Toro Timemaster 30 lawn mower is available at Ace Hardware and Tractor Supply Co. locations.

Buy Now!

Ethan O'Donnell
An experienced woodworker, Ethan O'Donnell has built furniture, cabinetry and artistic elements for Fortune 500 companies as well as the National Park Service. He's also a certified rigger, forklift and telehandler operator with OSHA and UCOR safety certifications. When he's not renovating his rustic cabin in Minnesota's Northwoods, Ethan rides and repairs his fleet of bicycles and motorcycles.